Estonia’s e-residency programme allows Indian startups access to entire European market

Estonia will conduct road shows and announce industry tie-ups over the next 12 months as part of the programme, which aims to enrol over 200 startups during 2018

Estonia has announced an e-residency programme, which enables Indian startups to get access to a government-issued digital ID, thus enabling them to get access to the entire European market.

Estonia is the first country in the world to open an e-residency programme.

Companies set up through e-residency are `trusted location-independent EU companies`, which allows them to be run remotely from anywhere on the earth with low costs and minimal hassles.

They will get access to an advanced and secured digital infrastructure, along with all the tools required to grow globally. Indian entrepreneurs can run their micro-businesses not only in India but grow them with access to the entire EU market.

e-residency, therefore, stands for ‘Make in India and Sell in Europe’!

“I am very glad to be in India to strengthen bilateral cooperation and talk about the digital society of Estonia. A unique example of this is the e-residency programme, which enables anyone in the world to start an European company. Thanks to this programme, the people of India can use the Estonian e-services and become virtual residents of Estonia,” Republic of Estonia’s Entrepreneurship & IT Minister Urve Palo said.

“Our digital development has happened thanks to the government’s efforts in e-governance and cybersecurity, and of course, also our technology companies who have been our partner for developing governmental e-services,” she added.

Already more than 1,200 Indian citizens are e-residents and the Baltic nation expects this figure to grow exponentially in the coming years, as the economic ties between Estonia, India and the European Union deepen further. Estonia aims to reach out to the booming Indian startup community through a series of road shows and industry tie-ups over the next 12 months. The programme aims to enrol over 200 startups during 2018.

Kaspar Korjus, Managing Director of Republic of Estonia’s e-Residency programme, explains, “The size of our countries might be very different, but Estonia and India actually have many things in common. Like Estonia, India has always been a very entrepreneurial country. India has the world’s largest freelance workforce with the highest percentage working in software development & technology, while Estonia is a global leader in ICT technologies, especially in e-Government.”

“e-residency can help leverage these common points by offering Indian entrepreneurs the opportunity to open and run a global EU company fully online from India or anywhere in the world and provide their access to the European market of 500 million people. India’s potential is huge and we are more than happy to contribute to unlock it,” Korjus said.

Estonia launched its e-Residency programme in December 2014 and as on date has over 30,000 e-residents from 140 countries. India will have the largest young workforce by 2020 with the average age being 29.


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